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Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: Amid uncertainty prevailing over the opening of Puri Srimandir’s Ratna Bhandar, the chamber containing Lord Jagannath’s treasure trove, a five-member team of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) inspected it from outside today.

The officials reviewed the structure of the chamber from Jagamohan and Navikata Mandap sides.

Following inspection, ASI team member Himadri Bihari Ota said the structural condition of Ratna Bhandar appears fine from outside and the agency will inspect the chamber from inside after they have the required permission.

While the Orissa High Court has allowed the ASI to carry out an inspection of the Ratna Bhandar on March 26 and 27, the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) has sought permission from the State Government for the same. However, no decision has been taken by the State Government so far.

On the other hand, a meeting of the Ratna Bhandar Sub-Committee under the chairmanship of SJTA Chief Administrator will be held today for a discussion on the matter. The temple rules relating to opening of the Ratna Bhandar will be reviewed at the meeting, informed sources.

Revenue Minister Maheswar Mohanty said since this is a sensitive issue, the administration will take steps after considering opinions of people belonging to all walks of life.

Earlier, Chief Administrator (Rituals) Pradeep Kumar Das had said that the inspection will be carried out only for assessing the structural condition of the chamber and there is no intention whatsoever to inspect any articles or other things inside.

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